European decorating brings va va voom

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Any successful home decorating project begins with an emphasis on priorities.
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A European flair in decorating can add drama and delight to anyone's kingdom

Lower the drawbridge and light the torches. Check the moats and fill the catapults with bigger boulders. The stones surely will be needed to repel vagabond hordes of youngsters searching for after-school snacks or thoughtless neighbors on a quest for their umpteenth cup of sugar, borrowed but never returned.

On second thought—never mind. You don’t have to live in a castle to regulate foot traffic into your home. Uninvited guests easily are controlled—through gentle hints, or mayhem. It’s the other kind—the loving and welcome guests—that you want to make comfortable. They are the people who appreciate the hospitality of a good neighbor, friend or relative. Why not prepare for those visits by indulging in some European decorating that adds pizzazz to any royal residence?

Begin in the bathroom

Any abode—large or small—is amenable to a fresh and stylish makeover. Basic makeovers include ridding the bathroom of rusted, chipped or just plain ugly tubs or showers. Today’s home enrichment technologies enable a variety of quick, professional installations that turn those old eyesores into new realms of relaxation. Add some European decorating accents such as brightly colored ceramic flower vases filled with silk posies or faux bamboo for a grand finish.

The new niceties in the bathroom most quickly are attained by indulging in an economical tub-to-shower conversion or the addition by professionals of a fresh, clean bathtub liner or shower base liner. Spruce up the room your guests can’t help but visit. The rest of the house soon will follow. Some well placed European decorating accents will tie it all together.

• Stone or resin planters
• Leather-look day beds
• Vinyl chaise lounges
• Tall ceramic flower vases
• Tubular-framed bar stools
• Sleek desks and media units
• Hanging tapestries

Add modern classics with fine craftsmanship

Any compilation of interior décor is enhanced by the addition of some elements whose ancestry harkens back to European decorating. France and Italy have added influences ranging from furniture to hand-blown glass. German woodworking and fine textiles contribute a high level of craftsmanship seen in many home furnishings. Consider adding some beautifully designed and backlit art glass panels for an opulent effect.

European countries all around the continent long have been adept at producing high-quality furniture or woolen products such as hallway runners and intricately woven area rugs. A home owner has a wide variety of choices—furniture, lighting fixtures, accessories and more—whose origins are found in European decorating. One’s budget and one’s preferences are the only parameters when adding a bit of European decorating to your home.

Go for some contrasting colors

A home with stark furnishings whose lines are straight and modern is made richer looking by the addition here and there of European-style wall hangings or tapestries such as those used in European decorating. Villas full of vivid reds, oranges and muted tones of earth colors blaze the way in bringing life to the lackluster home.

A full palette of colors is ready to be accessed for use in home decorating. Something as simple as crimson throw pillows and turquoise drapes can make a huge yet inexpensive difference. The transformation is one at which to marvel. A touch of European decorating is successfully introduced to any suite of rooms through the addition of something as simple as a beautifully lit chandelier.

Versatility is a key to comfort at home

Today’s households are far from static. Families are on the go at all hours of the day and night, busy with school and activities of every sort. Everyone craves a place where comfort is king—or queen. And everyone can utilize a bit of European decorating to spice up their digs. Whether the desire is to add a lavish bathroom spa or some basic improvements, European decorating accents can help bring the plan to life.

Be ready for the unexpected—guest

The trend toward European decorating has a sensible aspect to it. Guests arrive unexpectedly not only at the holidays but all year long. Consider adding to your furnishings some extra seating and overnight accommodations. An attractive day bed, fold-away bed or chaise lounge is useful. The chaise lounge—whose meaning is translated as “long bed”—is a European decorating classic whose assets include comfort and durability.

All it takes is elbow grease and a bit of imaginative European decorating to rid one’s kingdom of its medieval darkness. Go for an uplifting flair and enjoy the refreshment of an almost-new home, whether your kingdom is a split-level, ranch style, colonial or Cape Cod kingdom—with or without a drawbridge and moat.

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